Naming Your Grief by Jennifer Parrish

It is so strange to me that I am writing something about finding acceptance and moving forward from my childlessness.  You see, I never thought I’d be here in this place . . .  Whenever I’d see stories of women who were moving forward from their childlessness, I was always so jealous—I wanted to be in that spot, yet I had no idea how to do it!

The turning point for me came after I saw a post on Facebook from a fellow CNBCer back in January.  She read a book about infertility and the author suggested naming your grief.  For my friend, that meant naming the children she would never have.  That touched a nerve with me and I knew I had to do the same!  

I talked to my husband about it that night and he thought it was a good idea, too.  So we discussed names and decided to name our prayed-for son and daughter.  We named our son Benjamin Wright and our daughter Diana Rose.  It felt so good to give them a name even though we never held them or ever carried them in my womb.  We knew them in our hearts and naming them gave us both peace.  It gave our grief a name and gave us something tangible to hold on to whenever we thought about the children we would never have.  Now, they have a name—an identity.  And our grief finally had a name and an identity.  

Since we named our pray-for babies, I have grown in leaps and bounds in finding acceptance and moving forward.  I definitely still have bad days, but the good days are now outweighing the bad.  I am allowing myself to grieve and to feel all the feelings associated with that.  I am finding joy and peace even in my childlessness.  

I am finally learning to live in that place between the grief of childlessness and the joy of a life well-lived!